"The Christianity of history is not Protestantism. If ever there were a safe truth it is this, and Protestantism has ever felt it so; to be deep in history is to cease to be a Protestant." (-John Henry Newman, An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine).

"Where the bishop is, there let the people gather; just as where ever Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church". -St. Ignatius of Antioch (ca 110 AD)a martyr later thrown to the lions, wrote to a church in Asia Minor. Antioch was also where the term "Christian" was first used.

“But if I should be delayed, you should know how to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of truth.” 1 Timothy 3:15

"This is the sole Church of Christ, which in the Creed we profess to be one, holy, catholic and apostolic." -CCC 811

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Pope calls for religious freedom in Muslim states

Reuters – Pope Benedict XVI blesses as he leads
the weekly general audience in Paul VI Hall at
the Vatican November 10, 2010
VATICAN CITY (Reuters)Pope Benedict Thursday said all states must guarantee the freedom for everyone to practice their faith publicly, a clear criticism of some Muslim countries where religious rights are restricted.

The pope issued the call in a document of nearly 200 pages called an "apostolic exhortation," in which he offered his reflections on a synod of bishops that met in the Vatican in 2008 on the theme the "Word of God."

He said the Catholic Church respected all religions and a separate section of the document was dedicated to relations with Muslims.

"All the same, dialogue would not prove fruitful unless it included authentic respect for each person and the ability of all freely to practice their religion," he said.

"Respect and dialogue require reciprocity in all spheres," he said, adding that this had to include the right to profess religion "privately and publicly and (for) freedom of conscience to be effectively guaranteed to all believers."

"Reciprocity" is the term the Roman Catholic Church uses in demanding full rights for Christians in Islamic states where laws prohibit them from practicing their faith openly. It has often asked for reciprocity with Saudi Arabia.

At least 3.5 million Christians of all denominations live in the Gulf Arab region, the birthplace of Islam and home to some of the most conservative Arab Muslim societies in the world.

The freedom to practice Christianity, or any religion other than Islam, is not always permitted in the Gulf and varies from country to country. Saudi Arabia, which observes an austere form of Sunni Islam, has the tightest restrictions.

The Vatican says Christians in predominantly Muslim countries should be allowed to practice their faith openly, just as Muslims can in predominantly Christian countries in Europe.

In Saudi Arabia, home to Islam's holiest sites, any form of non-Muslim worship takes place in private. Converting Muslims is punishable by death, although such sentences are rare.

Services and prayer meetings are often held in diplomats' homes but access is limited, so Christians meet to worship in hotel conference rooms, at great risk.

The Vatican has expressed concern about the fate of Christians in predominantly Muslim Iraq, where 52 hostages and police were killed Sunday when security forces stormed a church that had been raided by al-Qaeda-linked gunmen.

In the document, the pope re-stated Vatican opposition to the use of violence in the name of religion.

1 comment:

  1. Are these proof of persecution to Catholic Church?

    It is nothing compared to MILLIONS OF PEOPLE that the Catholic Church killed to force Catholicism to be the Universal church during the Midieval period!!!!



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